As 2021 gets underway, Pastor Gregg Matte is inviting the Houston's First family to pray and fast on behalf of our church and our personal lives, as well.
DAILY ONLINE DEVOS WITH PASTOR GREGG
The week of Jan 4-8, Pastor Gregg was live online at 12 noon for a short devotional thought along with a special guest each day. You can watch each of them below via Facebook or YouTube with the links provided:
Read ahead to learn about when to fast in January, what to pray for, and fasting in general — as well as helpful resources.
Many people equate "fasting" with simply "not eating" — but there are several different types of fasts. A Daniel Fast, for example, is considered a partial fast, allowing you to consume certain types of food and drink (PDF). The fast is based on one that Daniel followed:
Fasting is letting go of a physical need for a spiritual plea.— Pastor Gregg Matte
While the staff and deacons participate in a Daniel Fast the week of Jan 4-8, 2021, Pastor Gregg invites you to do so along with them that week. He'll provide a short devotional thought online each of those weekdays around lunchtime, so you can tune in for that along with others. (Exact time and links will be posted here closer to that week.)
Or, you can choose to participate in a fast on any dates of your choosing in January. In particular, Pastor Gregg suggests three options as you consider how you will join in on this churchwide fast:
The Daniel Fast is a partial fast, allowing you to eat a wide variety of foods. You can find a list of food and drinks that comply with the fast here. Essentially, you can eat:
During your fast — whether for one meal or longer — join with Pastor Gregg, staff members, and deacons as we pray for our personal lives and our church. Pastor Gregg and the others are following this prayer guide during their five-day fast. We invite the church family to pray for these, as well, during your fast — whenever and for however long that might be! Download a one-page PDF of the prayer guide here.
The Worship team at Houston's First compiled this Spotify playlist for your use as you fast at some point during the month of January: Daniel Fast 2021 Spotify Playlist
Timothy Ateek, Executive Director of Breakaway Ministries, spoke about fasting when he was our guest speaker at Houston's First in the summer of 2020. Watch his message below — "Feeling Full from Going Hungry."
The following resources were compiled by Houston's First staff members and other contributors to help you and your family if you opt to follow a Daniel Fast:
The following external resources are not associated with Houston's First, but they might provide you with additional information and ideas — especially recipes! Some of these websites reference registering for a Daniel Fast in January, but those are separate from the one we're doing at Houston's First.
Finally, CornerBooks at The Loop Campus has books to borrow if you want to learn even more. These titles are available to borrow for free using your CornerBooks library card. If you do not already have a card, fill out this form to gain access to over 14,000 titles in their collection! (Each title's call number is provided in parentheses so you can locate it on the shelves, but don't hesitate to ask a CornerBooks staff member or volunteer for assistance if needed!)
You can search CornerBooks' entire collection online for other books related to fasting, prayer — or any topic you have in mind — by visiting their online search tool.